New look at self-control | Neuro-patch
Much of the time, our model of reality is viewed from the perspective of ourselves, right now. The notion of Theory of Mind (ToM) is that to a certain extent we can instead take the perspective of another person. We can metaphorically walk in their shoes. This ability seems to reside in the posterior temporo-parietal junction (pTPJ). This is also the location involved in prosocial behaviour. A recent paper (Soutschek, Ruff, Strombach, Kalenscher, Tobler; Boutrain stimulation reveals crucial role of overcoming self-centeredness in self-control; Science Advances, Oct 2016, Vol. 2, no. 10) finds this area is also involved in controlling impulses to take immediate rewards, rather than wait for greater rewards in future. The researchers used disruptive transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) to shut down the junction and then tested for prosocial vs selfish behavior in a sharing money game, the ability to recognize what another person could see (extent of ToM), and the ability to show self